John Goodman explores some of the characteristics of complex systems and applies them to healthcare.
- Complex systems can never be accurately modeled
- There is no reliable model of the health care sector
- Complex systems have unintended consequences
- Implications of unintended consequences.
The key take away is that it's impossible to centrally plan a complex system and that trying to do so is generally counterproductive.
Why are unintended consequences so important? Because in trying to solve one problem we can create other problems. Also in trying to solve problems, we can end up making them worse. ObamaCare has three principal goals: control costs, raise quality and increase access to care. Yet there is no model which allows us to predict that any of the three objectives will be even partially achieved. In fact, readers of this blog know that we expect all three problems to get worse.